Characters and Universal Issues in Othello by Shakespeare

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In the play “Othello” William Shakespeare uses characters with complexities and personal traits that are timeless and relate to any audience. The play conveys universal issues, such as the jealously that Othello experiences and the duplicitous and cruel nature of Iago. Shakespeare clearly and thoroughly shows this very successfully by ways such as the characters personalities and how they react in different situations. Othello is a calm and rational person, until he is consumed by a jealous rage, destroying his sane and collected nature. Throughout the play Shakespeare uses Othello to display the universal and timeless issue of jealousy, and how it can cause one to lose all mental and physical control. Shakespeare skilfully expresses this through the metaphor “O, beware, my lord, of jealously; It is a green-eyed monster which doth mock The meat it feeds on” At first Othello is a calm and rational character, but soon his mind is twisted and manipulated by Iago’s malicious ways, falling into his plan of revenge. Othello is convinced by Iago that his love, Desdemona, is having an affair with his lieutenant, Cassio, triggering him to slowly turn into a hateful and jealous ‘green-eyed monster’. The audience is shown exactly how jealous can change a person and slowly eat away at their sanity. The composer cleverly displays that being consumed with jealously and rage can become overwhelming and destructive to the individual and the people around them. Shakespeare cleverly portrays this through a monster motif/imagery in “But jealous for they are jealous: ‘tis a monster Begot upon itself, born upon itself.” Emilia explains to Desdemona that jealousy can be violent and dangerous, and that men are naturally jealous. The composer uses an extended metaphor in Iago’s soliloque “Hell and night Must bring this monstrous birth to the world’s light” Iago speaks of how he must hatch his plan and bring Othello down. Shakespeare expresses other types of jealousy, but...
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